Archive for December, 2009

DMM Advisory – PostalOne! Performance

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From a late afternoon DMM Advisory:

Electronic Documentation Processing Performance – In the week ending December 20, the Postal Service processed 8,459 jobs electronically in PostalOne!. Of these jobs, approximately 98% processed in less than 30 minutes and 99.72% processed in less than 2 hours.

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I find issue with two things in this statement.  Number one, It has been repeatedly asked in several MTAC venues to clarify these statistics, mainly around the use of JOBS and not VOLUME.  The number of jobs PostalOne! is processing is not nearly as important as the volume, the number of pieces being processed.  If the 98% of the jobs processed are all jobs under 10,000 pieces each, this way of presenting the data is painting a skewed picture, we need to see figures at to what percentage this represents of the entire volume that is trying to be pushed through the pipeline. These questions remain to be answered.

The second issue I have is the USPS presenting 2 hours as an acceptable, even laudable, processing time.  Just-in-time and continuous mailers do not have two hours to sit around while this processing takes place.  This adds time to the old way of doing thing, rather than making things faster.

I know that the Postal Service is working hard along with the industry to decrease processing times.  They just need to present a clear picture of where things stand.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

December 31st, 2009 at 5:06 pm

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Important PostalOne! Statement Date Information

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January 4, 2010 Price Change Postage Statement Processing:

For the January 4, 2010 price change, postage statements for mailings with a mailing date on or after January 4th must not be submitted until January 4, 2010. (This includes PS Form 3541 Periodicals, PS Form 3600 First-Class, PS Form 3602 Standard Mail, and PS Form 3605 Package Services.)

Postage Statements submitted for mailings with a mailing date prior to January 4 must be finalized in the PostalOne! system before January 4.

For any postage statement submission method in the PostalOne! System (Mail.dat, Mail.XML, Postal Wizard or hard copy submission) the following three dates must be all before January 4th or all after January 4th:

1. The submission date to the PostalOne! system.
2. The mailing date.
3. The certification date (when the postage statement is finalized.)

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Update 12:30pm Eastern

I have gotten several email questions and private comments regarding this post.  For clarification – this information was not communicated by the Postal Service until this morning.  It came via an email communication via the USPS PostalOne Help Desk.  I cannot find any notice whatsoever on PostalOne! itself, the Business Customer Gateway, or any other USPS site.  I have to agree with many of the commentors – this information should have been widely distributed and publicized much earlier than today.  The holiday season is traditionally a time many people are out of the office.  For those who entered their PostalOne info in advance – they are in for a rude awakening.  They will encounter problems that could have been avoided had they been provided this critical information in a timely manner.

I hate to protest too loudly, because this is actually progress – last price change in November there was no notice at all about the Statement Date issues, one mailer I deal with spent an entire day trying to figure out what was wrong, checking systems, conferring with USPS local clerks who had no idea what was happening, only to find out all the problems were statement date related.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

December 31st, 2009 at 11:45 am

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PostalOne! Release 23

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PostalOne! Release 23.0.0 will be implemented on Monday, January 4, 2010. A system-wide outage for PostalOne! is planned for Sunday, January 3 from 7:00 pm CT through Monday, January 4 5:00 am CT.

In conjunction with the PostalOne! outage, FAST Web Services will not be accessible. Messages will be queued and processed after the outage and mailers will not be able to schedule appointments electronically using Mail.XML®. FAST online scheduling will be available during the PostalOne! outage. Please call the PostalOne! Help Desk at 1-800-522-9085 if you have questions.

PostalOne! Release notes can be accessed here

These updates mainly have to do with the Shipping Services price changes coming up this weekend.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

December 30th, 2009 at 10:38 am

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Scanning Excellence – When in doubt, scan barcodes

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YouTube broadcast directed to USPS personnel regarding barcodes and scanning processes at the Postal Service –

Scanning Excellence – When in doubt, scan barcodes. – Field Updates with Pat Donahoe – 12-15-09

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3alpd8dtMM

Written by Lisa.Bowes

December 23rd, 2009 at 12:18 pm

Posted in USPS

ACS Issues

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DEC182009.PDF

After the fact news posted at RIBBS today.  There was an issue with ACS Fulfillment on 12/18.  It says all ACS, so that would include Full Service ACS, OneCode ACS and Traditional ACS.  The notice also states that there is an issue that may cause lower mail volume reporting than normal, and that they hope to have the issue resp;ved 12/21.  12/21 is yesterday, I wonder if the issue has been resolved?

Update 12/23 – be sure to read USPS comment.  Issue has been resolved, thank you to the Postal Service for the quick response!

Written by Lisa.Bowes

December 22nd, 2009 at 8:19 pm

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Happy Holidays

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Best wishes to all this holiday season!

Written by Lisa.Bowes

December 22nd, 2009 at 4:49 pm

Posted in USPS

PostalOne! Critical Issues List

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PostalOneCriticalIssueExtCustomers.pdf

Version 21, 16 pages, posted at RIBBS yesterday

Written by Lisa.Bowes

December 22nd, 2009 at 9:56 am

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Postage Statements

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Don’t forget or let it creep up on you, starting January 2010 postage statements will need to match the versions dated 01/04/2010.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

December 21st, 2009 at 12:34 pm

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GAO Study on IMb

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The General Accounting Office recently did a study on Full Service Intelligent Mail.  The title of the report says a lot:

“U.S. Postal Service Needs to Strengthen System Acquisition and Management Capabilities to Improve Its Intelligent Mail Full Service Program”

You can take a look at the report here.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

December 18th, 2009 at 10:04 am

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Direct marketing ‘ready to grow again in 2010’

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Written by Lisa.Bowes

December 15th, 2009 at 1:29 pm

Posted in USPS